Bobcats formally apply to change back to Hornets

Michael Jordan confirmed his plans to bring the past back to the future for the Charlotte Bobcats, with the team owner and Hall of Famer officially announcing that the team has applied to the NBA to change its name to the Hornets.

If approved, the switch will take effect for the 2014-15 season, as the league requires a period of approximately 18 months for such a transition to be executed.

The initial NBA franchise in Charlotte was named the Hornets and resided in the city from 1988 until moving to New Orleans in 2002. Two years later, the league awarded the expansion Bobcats to Charlotte.

The Bobcats were able to attempt to take back the Hornets moniker after New Orleans announced in December it would be changing its nickname to the Pelicans, with the move made official last month.

"This is a monumental moment for our organization," Jordan said. "After undergoing an elaborate research process, we recognize that this is what our fans want. We believe that making this change would not only re-establish one of the most recognized brands in sports, but would also unify our fan base by bringing together our loyal Bobcats fans with those who have fond memories of our city's NBA predecessor. Our fans spoke and we listened."

The Hornets were also more successful than their successor, both on the court and at the gate. The Hornets made the playoffs in seven of their 14 seasons in Charlotte and led the NBA in attendance eight times during that stretch.

On the other hand, the Bobcats have reached the playoffs in only one of nine seasons and established a new NBA low for winning percentage in a single campaign during 2011-12, when the team went 7-59 in that lockout-shortened season.